Pacific Island Ecosystems Research Center

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Research at the Pacific Island Ecosystems Research Center focuses on providing the scientific understanding and technologies needed to support and implement sound management and conservation of our Nation's biological resources occurring in Hawai'i and other Pacific island locations.

Spotlight on Research

Spotlight on Research

Learn more about how researchers are tracking how rare plants are responding to changing environmental conditions.

Plant Responses

Featured Scientist

Featured Scientist

PIERC Microbiologist Dr. Carter Atkinson is using new tools to detect emerging threats and rare species in Pacific Island ecosystems.

Atkinson Research

News

Date published: November 17, 2021

How Can Managers Respond to Changing Ecosystems? New BioScience Special Section Provides In-Depth Exposition of the Resist-Accept-Direct Framework

A new Special Section in the journal BioScience provides an in-depth exposition of the Resist-Accept-Direct framework, a new approach to guide natural resource decision making. Articles in the Special Section explore the practical application of the framework, compatibility of existing tools, social barriers and opportunities, and future science needs. 

Publications

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Year Published: 2021

Range eclipse leads to tenuous survival of a rare lizard species on a barrier atoll

Rediscovery of living populations of a species that was presumed to be extirpated can generate new narratives for conservation in areas suffering from losses in biodiversity. We used field observations and DNA sequence data to verify the rediscovery of the Critically Endangered scincid lizard Emoia slevini on Dåno′, an islet off the...

Richmond, Jonathan Q.; Wostl, Elijah; Reed, Robert; Fisher, R. N.

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Year Published: 2021

Foraging behavior in a generalist snake (brown treesnake, Boiga irregularis) with implications for avian reintroduction and recovery

Broad foraging classifications, such as generalist or specialist forager, are generally beneficial for population management in defining expectations of typical behavior. However, better understanding as to how individual variance in behavior interfaces with management actions, such as control of an invasive predator (such as brown treesnakes;...

Nafus, Melia G.; Xiong, Peter X.; Paxton, Eben H.; Yackel Adams, Amy A.; Goetz, Scott Michael

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Year Published: 2021

Understanding grass invasion, fire severity, and Acacia koa regeneration for forest restoration in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park

With invasive grasses increasing wildfire occurrence worldwide, a better understanding of the relationships between native plants, fire, and invasive grass is needed to help restoration plans facilitate ecosystem resilience. Invasive grasses are particularly problematic for altering fire regimes in the tropics, yet in Hawaiʻi, restoration sites...

Natalia, Hamilton; Yelenik, Stephanie G.; Durboraw, Tara; Cox, Robert; Gill, Nathan S.